ADDIS ABABA – Somaliland’s representative office in Ethiopia sustained minor fire and smoke damage after an arsonist struck it, an official confirmed last Saturday evening (Oct 7).
Somaliland’s representative to Ethiopia, Ali Hussein Ismail Jirdeh provided a short briefing on the incident on his Facebook account hours after it took place.
“Somaliland’s representative office in Addis sustained minor damage this evening after it was set on fire. One individual has been arrested so far. Police and firefighters are currently conducting an investigation into the incident,” Jirdeh wrote on his Facebook page.
According to sources within the representative office, the individual who was arrested is said to be a man of ‘Ethiopian’ origin. Further information on the man’s ethnicity wasn’t provided.
So far, it is not clear why the man set the office on fire, and how he was able to get past security.
Tensions between Ethiopia’s Oromo community and Somalilanders have been high since mid-September, after dozens of Somalilanders involved in the khat trade were mistakenly killed by Oromo rebels intent on killing Somalis from Ethiopia’s Ogaden region.
Late last month, Ethiopia’s Information Minister, Negeri Lencho, who hails from the Oromia region, accused Somaliland of ‘illegally displacing’ thousands of Oromo people after the incident.
Somaliland’s Foreign Minister, Saad Ali Shire, denied the allegations shortly afterwards, stating that the people of Somaliland have always been welcoming of Oromo people.
This is a developing story. Please check back at The National for more.
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